The top US envoy to Iran said the expiring UN arms embargo against the Islamic Republic should be renewed to prevent it from “becoming the arms dealer of choice for rogue regimes and terrorist organizations” – hours before Tehran issued an arrest warrant for President Trump over the killing of a top general.
“If we let it expire, you can be certain that what Iran has been doing in the dark, it will do in broad daylight and then some,” Brian Hook told The Associated Press on Sunday.
“If we play by Iran’s rules, Iran wins. It is a mafia tactic where people are intimidated into accepting a certain kind of behavior for fear of something far worse,” Hook said about the mullahs’ threats to retaliate if the embargo, which is set to expire in October, is extended.
Hours after his comments, Iran issued an arrest warrant and asked Interpol for assistance in detaining President Trump and a group of other officials it said was involved in the US drone strike that killed Gen. Qassem Soleimani.
The top military commander’s Jan. 3 killing in Baghdad prompted Iran to launch missiles at American targets in Iraq.
In retaliation for an extension of the arms embargo, Iran could kick out international inspectors monitoring its nuclear program, deepening a crisis sparked when Trump unilaterally withdrew from Tehran’s 2015 nuclear deal with world powers.
The UN embargo has so far prevented Iran from buying fighter jets, tanks, and warships, but has failed to stop its smuggling of weapons into war zones.
Despite that, Hook insisted that both an import and export ban on Tehran must remain in place to secure the wider region.
Iran’s mission to the UN did not immediately respond to a request for comment by The AP on Hook’s remarks.
Source: New York Post
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